Love it or hate it we all use the energy produced by the oil and gas industry. Very few of us are willing to give that up. That's why it's important to understand the perspectives of the energy industry in contrast to that of the government, pricing models and supply scales. John Hofmeister, former president of Shell Oil Company, Founder and CEO of the non-profit Citizens for Affordable Energy and author of Why We Hate the Oil Companies: Straight Talk from an Energy Insider, talks with Jan Mazotti and Kelly de la Torre in this week's Energy 101 segment.
Hofmeister says, the Energy Industry is a free market only to the point of consumer choice of which gas station they choose to fill up in - but beyond that, everything else that is done by the energy companies, is highly regulated and subject to the most stringent government regulations.
While Government regulates everything that is done in the industry, "But government refuses, fails to, does not want to and will not, in our history so far, determine how we're gioing to go forward in energy and they leave it up to the companies to come and wait to be told, "No." and so the companies come and experiment, ( ... ) the industry tries, pokes and probes at government to try and get permission and the government will go along with it up to a point where it says, "No." If it doesn't say no, then the industry can go ahead."
In the past century, American consumers benefited from having more energy in the supply chain than they needed. Now, Hofmeister blames political leadership for failing to deal with pricing issues from the oil cartel withholding production which raises the price artificially.
He also points to the intellectual war going on in our country over alternative energy versus traditional energy. "The reality is, we need both. Why can't we all agree we need both?" This is a call for politicians to be accountable to promote solutions rather than point at problems - in the end to benefit everyone.
These frustrations led Hofmeister to start the non-partisan organization, Citizens for Affordable Energy to promote grass roots education for all Americans to understand the issues we face and the future of energy. The non-profit is consumer oriented, funded only by consumers, and takes no contributions from energy producers. You can find them on Twitter and Facebook.
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